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October 31, 2013

CAMBODIA | Friday, 1 November 2013 | Views [4312]

A favorite coffee house to hang out at

A favorite coffee house to hang out at

Why is it when I am away from a computer I can think of many things to write about but when I am sitting at a computer, the mind goes blank?  To get the writing juices flowing I will start with where I am.  I am sitting at the Espresso Café in Kampot and a really strong stench is in the air.  Could it be the cigarette the girl is smoking a table over?  Can a cig smell that fowl, more so than normal?  Is it the special coffee they roast and brew?  Is it the lunch special of Arancini, whatever that is?  Or could the putrid smell have come from the dog that was just shooed away?   The smell has gone and now I can focus on this entry for the journal but I do wish all the smokers in here would take at least a 30 min break from not lightening up.   Another traveler told me people pick up smoking in Cambodia because it is cheap.  Now that sounds like an intelligent thing to think and do.

I left Kep at noon time to come to Kampot to get some computer time in using my computer.  With it being early afternoon, the annoying bugs that feed on ankles are still asleep allowing me to get some work done with being driven crazy with bites.  I lug the HP notebook with all the required gadgets and Internet stick to Kampot with me to get work done but already I can tell what I want to do and will end up doing won’t be the same.  The Internet stick is not connecting.  The wi-fi adapter on the computer is not working and there are very few outlets in convenient places in this otherwise great coffeehouse to hang out in as evident with all the others travelers with electronics.

It is Halloween and I will forgo any parties that might be around tonight or tomorrow night and settle for a Belgium movie at the local movie house.

The date has been set for my departure from Kep Gardens (KG), it will be Nov 15th.  That leaves me two more weeks to enjoy the surroundings and the students.  The last four weeks have been eventful and here are some highlights:

  • Attending the last day at Pchum Ben at a local pagoda (see pictures)
  • Welcoming back old and new students
  • Settling into a nice morning routine in the market to have breakfast and an iced coffee while reading and writing before the 9:00am session started.
  • Hearing Fido the faithful dog whimper by the window to get me up at 5:45am – he likes it when I did downward and upward dog with him
  • Having the company of three other volunteers
  • The scary and uncanny timing of a huge spirit tree on the Kep road come down right on KG’s tuk tuk that was just newly restored; thank heavens the driver was not injured at all – it was a matter of mere seconds that he was spared but this controlled tree removal had gone wrong.  Where the mighty tree once stood, there is a huge gap on the road and in the soul of Kep.  Major road work is being done to promote tourism but with everyone and their relative opening a guest house, the market is saturated and everyone is taking a hit yet more are being built.
  • Sad news with the geese and hen population dwindling with night time raids.  The original 4 that were here when I arrived along with 5 goslings that were born, 1 goose and 2 goslings remain.  The dozen hens have been reduced to one hen, one rooster, and 8 baby chicks.
  • The cat population has increased from the pregnant black cat by three kittens in her July litter and several more from her recent litter yet to be seen.
  • Quiet walks with Fido is the afternoon between sessions
  • Spending long afternoons walking the jungle in Kep Natl Park.  When I came down with a cold a few weeks ago, I headed to the park to absorb all the good energy I could and I swear I felt much better the next day.
  • Quality reading time: Falling Leaves, Walk Two Moons, The Bean Trees, My Father’s Notebook, Is that Thing a Diesel?, Aleph, Confessions of an Economic Hitman, A Woman of Angkor, Memory Keeper’s Daughter, First They Killed My Father
  • Pausing to look up to see the star studded night sky
  • I have very much enjoyed working with the students and getting to know their names, personalities and improvements in English.  

On Saturday Karen, a teacher friend, arrives and it will be nice to have her around for the last two weeks in this area before we move on for other adventures.

Before I fly out Dec 4th, I have one more yoga retreat to attend outside of Siem Reap.  It is called Hariharalaya and another volunteer recommended it highly, plus, I wanted to go back to Siem Reap to do some gift shopping.

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